Bob Dole Calls on Congress To Pass Health Care Reform, And Predicts Passage

Yesterday I listed Bob Dole as one of the former Republican leaders who has supported health care reform, at least in general principles. The Kansas City Star quotes Dole as predicting health care reform will pass–and is urging Congress to enact health care reform as soon as possible:

Former Kansas Sen. Bob Dole says “there will be a signing ceremony” for a health care reform bill either late this year or early next.

But the former presidential candidate says he isn’t sure what the bill will say.

Dole, 86, spoke with reporters after an hour-long speech at a health care reform summit sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City.

He told the group that he and former Sens. Tom Daschle, Howard Baker, and George Mitchell will issue a statement later today urging Congress to enact health care reform as soon as possible.

Subsequently a statement was released by Dole and Daschle:

Congress could be close to passing comprehensive health reform. The American people have waited decades and if this moment passes us by, it may be decades more before there is another opportunity. The current approaches suggested by the Congress are far from perfect, but they do provide some basis on which Congress can move forward and we urge the joint leadership to get together for America’s sake.”

Dole blamed partisanship for health care reform not passing:

Sometimes people fight you just to fight you,” he said. “They don’t want Reagan to get it, they don’t want Obama to get it, so we’ve got to kill it…

“Health care is one of those things…Now we’ve got to do something.”

Dole did express concerns about the cost and about the public option.

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1 Comment

  1. 1
    Eclectic Radical says:

    This is not a huge surprise to me.
     
    Dole wrote a practical health care plan during the debate over the issue under President Clinton. It was not very different from the Finance Committee bill in quite a few areas. It was drastically closer to the Democratic bills of this round of reform debates than to any of the Republican bills. Back then, Dole was on the right wing of the argument.
     
    I don’t like the Baucus bill and I didn’t like Dole’s bill, but clearly the former Senator understands the issue.
     

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